I spent MANY YEARS feeling that guilt, that frustration of constantly feeling trapped in a vicious cycle as so many others out there.  I wanted more than anything to show my kids that you can do anything you put your mind to. Whenever I post my before and after photo I get choked up because all those feelings come rushing back. I could almost feel how I felt at that moment when I was my heaviest. I was 33 years old, 5’2, 187lbs and feeling beyond defeated. I could not believe I let myself get that far out of control again. You see, I did the same thing with my first pregnancy with my daughter and then yo-yoed up and down until I got pregnant with my son. Sure, I was pregnant and tried to use that as an excuse but honestly I knew deep down inside gaining 77lbs from a pregnancy is unhealthy and unnecessary. After all, I gave birth to a 7lb baby boy not a 50lb elephant, lol! I was so frustrated and overwhelmed. I wanted to get healthy, but I didn’t know where to begin. The thought of losing all that weight seemed insurmountable even with my amazing husband’s support. Besides I had developed a Hiatal Hernia after that pregnancy which I thought would surely end any possibility of being able to get fit let alone form a six-pack. That hernia formed because I thought I would get a six-pack from one visit at a gym. I went to a gym about a month after my son was born, put 50lbs on the ab machine, then felt a “twist and a pop”. I thought I was done for until I found the Insanity programs. I was told it would never improve but it did and WITHOUT surgery!  Thanks to the ab muscles I built with Insanity! It reversed it somewhat and it is nowhere near as visible as it once was. It will actually stay in for quite some time if I push it in. I could never do that before, it would just protrude all the time. It was almost another excuse not to get healthy. I had such self-defeating thoughts. I’m too far gone, I’ve got a hernia, I’m too old, I’m too busy; I’m a wife and a mother blah blah blah!

I still remember that day it all changed. It was a Sunday, and I had finished eating some wings sitting there feeling self-defeated. My kids had been chanting humorously in the house “mama’s got a big ol’ butt” after I had said those exact words mocking myself not realizing the example I was setting (or lack thereof). It wasn’t until I saw the Insanity infomercial that I decided to take a chance. From there my life was never the same.  I followed the protocol for the program and the results continued to follow.  No, it wasn’t that easy as a matter of fact it was very hard. Did I want to quit at times? ABSOLUTELY but it was too late, I had already changed my inner dialog. I started feeling good about myself mentally. Then the physical changes started to follow. I just keep feeding off that and monitored my self-talk and thoughts. I now realize that our behaviors are reflected by how we feel inside, which will be reflected on how we appear on the outside. When we feel good about ourselves, it shows. THAT was my ultimate goal—to feel better about myself on the inside, so that my body and personae would reflect that confidence on the outside. So when someone asks me, HOW? I say start by changing your inner dialog. I now acknowledge the small accomplishments: the positive self-talk, getting my workout in, drinking Shakeology, eating more nutritionally balanced meals, and my behaviors and body has reflected that. I no longer need encouragement to continue exercising. I now find it easy to resist food temptations, and have gained self-esteem—not because of the weight loss, but because I am managing my life and my body in a way that is honoring it—and my fit body that followed is but a side effect! TODAY, I sweat to CELEBRATE this ONE BODY I was given. I don’t work out just to “GET RIPPED” and I don’t fuel my body with Shakeology and healthy foods just to “GET A 6-PACK”. While the effects of exercise on my appearance are amazing, a deeper motivation had to exist. Not just for better, more long-lasting results, but for a happier healthier version of me! So I tell everyone that is struggling, whatever you are going through right now, whatever storm you are in – acknowledge the fact that you possess the POWER, LOVE AND SELF-DISCIPLINE to take charge of your life and change it at any moment!